the down-low on the nose-blow (the issues with the tissues)

Originally posted on August 6, 2010 at 2:15 AM

Every opinion I’ve ever had about tissues. Why? Because I can.

Whether you call them the generic “tissues,” the British “paper handkerchiefs,” or apply the brand name “Kleenex” to all forms of the product, everyone has to have something to blow their nose with. And since handkerchiefs for actual use went out of vogue, oh, I don’t know, say 100 years ago (the Kleenex was actually invented in 1924), disposable paper facial tissues seem like a topic everyone can relate to.

First of all, no one likes those lotion ones. They feel slimy, and although they may do the job for your nose, they also spread that grease all over your surrounding facial area. Not to mention that tissues can be used for so many thing besides blowing your nose, most of which don’t require lotion. Ever tried to clean your glasses off with a lotioned tissue? It’s so much easier to just use a regular tissue and then dab a bit of lotion or Vaseline on after.

Instead of popping big bucks on expensive “soothing” tissues, I prefer the generic brands. I have allergies, so I blow my nose often, and I really don’t need extra-plush tissues to do so. The two-ply kind still have to be folded over (no matter what the commercial says), so you might as well get the thinner ones that cost a lot less.

I also like to use them on lots of other things, like a quick sink wipe-down (which leads to less frequent cleaning and less chemicals used), minor spills (where a whole paper-towel would be wasteful), makeup, etc. So buying cheaper and using them in place of more expensive paper towels is a good way to go. My favorites? “Great Value,” the generic by Walmart, has some really simple designs out right now that I like. (Yes, yes, Walmart’s evil; I know. Put it in a letter.) The only time I splurge on tissues? To get the super cute holiday boxes.

As for reusing tissues… if that reusing is for anything bodily, I’d say no way. Gross! That’s like begging for bacteria to cultivate. (Not to mention housemates to gag.) The only time you shouldn’t just trash a used tissue is if it’s been used on something non-perishable to later be used on something else non-perishable. And even then, they’re like 1.08 a box; just toss it.

Here’s something: tissue box covers. I usually think they’re unnecessary unless your room design is “fancy” enough that a box of tissues ruins the effect. In which case, I have one suggestion: think about the top surface of your cover before you buy it (and your matching bathroom set). We got this super cute cover from Bed Bath & Beyond, and although I think it’s perfect for the room it’s in, the black top is silly. When you pull a tissue out of the holder, it leaves behind hundreds of tiny pieces of tissue-dust. White dust. That land on that black surface. It will never be clean. I actually think it was worth it, but other people might not. Food for thought.

Want some creative ways to use tissues? How about a Tootsie Roll ghost?
A cute carnation for a baby or bridal shower?

Not into crafts quite that disposable? Check out this adorable idea for a tissue box photo album. I’ve even cut out sections of really pretty tissue boxes and framed them as impromptu art for staging a home!

Once you get started, the possibilities are endless! I promise I’m not in cahoots with any of the major tissue companies *yet.* I wish you all few tears and happy nose-blowing!

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